New York in the Sixties, Klaus Lehnartz, photography, 1968
I cringed when I first saw this image taken in the summer of 1968. A nun seems to be walking with her head nodded downwards keeping her eyes to the ground. It almost makes me wonder why she feels the need to do this action, but then I take in the scene fully. The two men and woman in back of her seem to be smiling and almost mocking her. The others do not seem to be smiling but watching the scene unfold. If you look to the man with his hands behind his back, I can only infer that he is surveying the scene almost as I am.
I quickly come to a conclusion regarding this picture and a question. Why would each individual watch idly by while a respected nun gets ridiculed by her peers? I believe that this photographer was not only showing this particular image, but also a solid representation of what happens in life. I think that it’s interesting that he included the younger two on the side, which adds a new element to this image that, I believe, regards not speaking up. Treating people unkindly while others look on without intervening is what we, as a population, have been dealing with for a very long time.